Garden Party Green Smoothie

Garden Party Smoothie

I love, love, love a garden party!  Put up the bunting, light all the candles, and filling every space with beautiful flowers.  Invite your friends and family and fill your garden with lots of laughter and love.  Best of all, serve up a feast fit for Alice and the Mad Hatter.  Make up these beautiful green smoothies and serve them as a welcome drink. They are perfect for everyone, especially our pregnant gals and those who might be driving.  These gorgeous green smoothies are deliciously healthy and so easy to make!

The Mad Hatter Green Smoothie
Green Layer
2 handfuls of spinach
1 banana
1 thick slice of ripe fresh pineapple
Water
Blend
Berry Layer
2 punnets of ripe strawberries

Blend up each of the layers separately.  Pour the green layer into the bottom of the glass.  Slowly pour the berry layer over a teaspoon so it sits on top of the green smoothie. You’ll need to do this carefully to get nice clean lines. Dress your glasses with slices of fresh fruit. I hope you have a gorgeous weekend!  With love and gratitude,

Nikki xx

Jurgen’s Gone Crazy!

Crazy September SaleI always knew Jurgen was a little crazy when I met him skydiving, but now I’m sure.  He wants to give away some things for FREE!

Our WHIZ CHIMP Blender, Green Smoothie Book and DVD if bought individually, normally retail for $451.00.

Not for the next two weeks!

Click here for Jurgen’s crazy Blender, Book & DVD deal.

It doesn’t get much better than this. Now is the time to step into spring and invest in your health. You and your family deserve it.

I’d love you to live out your dreams with incredible health and vitality. Make a lasting change that your body will thank you for, long into the future.

Be quick, the sale will finish on 30th September 2014! While stocks last.

The Results Are In & I Need Your Help!

Cholesterol Ferritin & Menstration5I usually have a blood test very six months to check my cholesterol and my iron levels.  I accidentally missed my check, which should have been in February.  I booked in straight after arriving back from Fiji.  I wanted to see if there were any significant changes to my blood.  The results were very interesting.

Cholesterol
My cholesterol levels were amazing.  Even my doctor was surprised.  In 2013 my overall cholesterol was 4.8.  This year my cholesterol was 3.7!  That’s without any medication, that’s purely based on lifestyle and diet.  This was my biggest confirmation yet that you can control your cholesterol by what you choose to eat.

My HDL or good cholesterol levels were at 1.8 and my LDL or bad cholesterol was at 1.5.  These are brilliant results.  Measuring your results is the best way to see how your body is going and if there are any tune-ups required.

Cholesterol Ferritin & Menstration Iron Levels
This brings me to my next point.  While my cholesterol was great, my ferritin (iron) levels were quite low.  I found this quite baffling as I eat A LOT of dark leafy greens, broccoli, lentils, beans, chickpeas, beetroot, nuts and seeds.  I also eat several eggs per week.  I thought I had this covered.

The doctor explained that iron exists in the body in two ways.  The first is the iron that is being used in your system.  The second is the iron that is stored in your bones.  I had plenty of iron in my system.  The iron stores in my bones were very low.  At this stage I was not anemic but would need to boost my iron stores.

Vegetarian Iron Sources
I did a little research and have a few theories about why my levels are low. Turns out that vegetarians need to eat a greater amount of iron to maintain their levels.  The only extra thing I’ve added in to my diet is firm tofu.   The rest of the iron rich foods I am already eating.

Cholesterol Ferritin & MenstrationI did learn that you can increase your iron absorption by eating foods high in vitamin C.  These include oranges, kiwi fruit, strawberries, tomatoes, capsicum and cabbage amongst a few others. My solution – add the fruits into my green smoothies!

Menstruation
What I really believe is influencing my low ferritin levels is my periods.  After the stroke, I stopped taking the contraceptive pill.  My periods became very heavy.  This has been going now for three years. I have also had to take a low dose aspirin to thin the blood, post stroke.  I believe this causing the problem of iron loss.

My doctor recommended doing an ultra sound to make sure there was not some other cause.  This is on the list to do for September.  The question is how do increase my ferritin levels back to a healthy range?

The doctor had three ideas.Cholesterol Ferritin & Menstration 8
1.    A hysterectomy
2.    Using an IUD (contraceptive device)
3.    Iron supplements

I’m not in love with any of these ideas at the moment.  I’m determined to find a way to increase my levels naturally.  This is where I’m hoping you can help me.

If you know of any ways to increase your ferritin levels naturally,
I’d love to hear about it.

Please share your comments below and help me solve this!  If you found this valuable, please share it with your family and friends.  I’m sure I can’t be on the only woman with this issue.  Hope you have a fantastic weekend!

Part 4 – The Low Down on Cleansing

The Low Down On CleansingThe Fiji cleanse was quite a roller coaster ride.  I thought it would be easy as we were eating a really healthy, clean whole food diet.  Having said that, I had developed a few bad habits that made cleansing really challenging.  The first was cappuccinos.  I used to have 3-4 cups per week.  I had managed to get my self up to two cups a day, so it was now 14 per week.  The other daily habit I had developed was a small piece of bread with breakfast.  It’s funny how easy it is to justify if it’s only one a day, but those bad boys added up and I paid the price.

Starting the Cleanse

The night before the cleanse was due to begin, we had dinner.  We were served a buffet of sliced raw vegetables, raw hummus, lettuce, stir fry vegetables, soup and fish.  I passed on the fish but ate a very generous size of everything else.  I thought if I wasn’t going to eat for five days and only exist on juices, I’d better stock up.  Turns out, this was not a very good idea.  The next morning for breakfast, there was fruit, sliced vegetables, hummus, lettuce and dressing.  Again I loaded up.  We then headed off to the do the pole climb.  Lunch was also more of the same. Beyond lunch there was no more food…

During the lunch break, Jurgen and I headed off for our colonics.  I had a light headache during the pole climb, but didn’t think much of it.  It was pretty hot so I just put it down to a little dehydration.  After the colonic, the headache became much worse.  By the time we headed back to the main hall for the evening session, my head was pounding.  I began to feel very unwell and was ill several times.  I felt so unwell that I had to head back to our room.  I was sick again and then I got into bed.  I was quite shocked at how much food I had thrown up and how terrible I was feeling.  I realised was eating way more than my body could digest.

Day Two

The Low Down On CleansingI managed to sleep right through the night and woke up with another headache.  I was still feeling nauseous and very drained.  We headed over for breakfast, which consisted of fresh juice.  After taking exactly 2.5 seconds to drink that, breakfast was over.  Given that I was still feeling so unwell, I don’t think I could have eaten anything anyway.  As the day went on we were served one very small thing every few hours.  These included juices, wheatgrass shots, Udo’s oil, smoothies, savory smoothies, or clear broth.  It’s surprising how your body stops being concerned with eating while you are cleansing.

Coffee – The Natural Enemy Of Cleansing!

During the morning session our leaders asked how everyone was feeling.  Another lady was also in a bad way.  Coffee was a hot topic and I started realize how it was playing a role in what I was now experiencing.  My body was releasing toxins into my blood stream.  My 14 cups of coffee each week were suddenly in the forefront of my mind.  I thought at this stage if I was feeling so unwell, that my body was working hard to get rid of it all. The colonics and drinking lots of salt water and electrolyte water was helping to flush the toxins out too.  It was going to be a waiting game. I knew I would have to start feeling better soon.

Rest, Rest, Rest

I was tired but this is quite normal during a cleanse.  We were told to rest a lot and take it easy.  Walking and jumping on the mini trampolines for a short while was fine.  Any heavier exercise was discouraged.  If you exercise too much during a cleanse, your body can release toxins much faster into the blood stream.  You can literally drop to the floor. There was no need to tell me twice, take it easy and napping became my mantra!

Perfumes, Deodorant & Moisturizer

The Low Down On CleansingWe were also advised not to wear deodorant or perfumes. They can stop the body from releasing toxins from the armpits and through the skin.  People can also be quite sensitive to smell while they are cleansing. I stopped using them and found that a quick wipe under the arms with a damp paper towel removed any musty smells! When we came off the cleanse I did start to use deodorant again.

Day Three – Yeah!

By the third day, I was feeling great.  I felt sorry for the others in our group who had started feeling unwell.  The more we were learning about our health and wellbeing, the more we started to really understand the benefits of cleansing. Each time we were served a small juice, I found myself savoring it slowly.  The flavours became really intense and I felt really full.

I was happy to learn that we were on the right track with our food and smoothies.  There was going to be a few small adjustments going forward but for the most part, we were doing everything we needed to do to create real health.  I was surprised that only on two occasions did I think about food.  When I really checked in with my tummy to see if I was hungry, I wasn’t and the feeling passed.

Day Five – Coming Off The Cleanse

By the fifth day we were ready to start coming off the cleanse.  How you come off a cleanse can be more important than the actual cleanse itself. It was recommended that we eat small raw food meals. The only thing I wanted was lettuce with a little dressing.  This is all I ate for breakfast, lunch and dinner for the entire day and I was full.  The lettuce tasted amazing and I didn’t want anything else.   I didn’t really want to stop cleansing.  I was feeling so good; my skin was fantastic and had a lot of energy.  I wasn’t thinking about my next meal anymore.  My stomach had flattened and I felt I had released a bit weight.

The Low Down On CleansingFor the rest of our event in Fiji, I was eating a very small portion of stirfry veggies and greens at each meal. They were delicious.  We also had wheatgrass shots and Udo’s Oil. I realized that I had been eating most of the right types of food in the past, I’d just been eating too much of it.  I couldn’t eat anywhere near what I had been able to before the cleanse.  I’ve changed my dinner plate to a side plate.  That seems to be the perfect size for me now.

I’d Definitely Do It Again

I was happy that we did the cleanse in a controlled environment.  I think if I’d felt so unwell without the support, I would not have continued the cleanse.  The leaders were amazing.  On arrival back from Fiji I’d released 4kg.  I was starting to get a little cuddly before the cleanse so this was a nice added bonus.  I also tried coffee on two occasions since we’ve been back and found I didn’t like it any more.  This was completely unexpected!  I’ve also had no interest in bread.  When preparing our meals, I’m making sure at least 70% of the plate is water rich, raw food.  I’ve also starting making healthy raw soups again.

Checklist For Life In the Real World

Here are few changes I’ve made since coming back from Fiji:
•    Use smaller plates and be aware of portion sizes.
•    Make more raw veggie breakfasts.
•    Use Udo’s Oil for my skin and to help remove toxins.
•    Use healthy fats and oils to promote great brain function.
•    Colonics every three months for colon care.
•    Do a yearly worming and parasite cleanse.
•    Complete a cleanse at least once year.
•    Daily probiotics are important – use different ones.
•    Drink water – hydration is key to every function of the body.
•    8-9 hours of sleep a night is perfect for me.
•    Exercising daily is oxygenating my blood and cells.
•    To love my body and give it want it really needs to be well.

Some of the things we had during the cleanse were:
•    Watermelon and lemon juice
•    Almond and avocado smoothie
•    Clear vegetable broths
•    Spinach soup – yum!
•    Wheat grass shots
•    Udo’s Oil
•    Savory juices such as freshly blended celery and tomato
•    Proboitics
•    Salt water
•    Electrolyte water
•    Water

Did you like what you’ve read?  Leave a comment below about your experiences with cleansing, I love to know what you’ve experienced.  If you feel this was valuable share it with your friends and family! Have a fantastic weekend!

With love & gratitude,

Nikki xx

Acid vs. Alkaline

The acid and alkaline balance in the body, unlocked one of the greatest secrets of health for me.  It actually gave me the blueprint for how to improve my health naturally after stroke. This dramatically reduced my risk of having another stroke.  It also reduced the risk of having all sorts of other conditions such as cancer, diabetes, heart disease etc.  Making this simple change has saved me from a future full of ongoing health issues.

What is the acid and alkaline balance?Acid vs. Alkaline copy
The acid alkaline balance is the balance of potential hydrogen or pH in the body.  It is measured with a testing strip using either saliva or urine.  The testing strip is then compared to a scale that ranges from 0 to 14.  Readings from 0 to 6.75 are considered to acid.  Readings from 6.75 to 14 are considered to be alkaline.  The ideal range is above 6.75.  The acid alkaline balance is influenced by food we eat and drink.

Acid
When the body has a high level of acidity, it is prone to illness.  Acid decreases the body’s ability to absorb minerals and nutrients.  It creates low energy production in the cells.  It also reduces the body’s ability to carry out cell repair.  The immune system is weakened.  The body also creates extra cells to store the acid, which often results in weigh gain.  High acidity in the body creates an environment that encourages growth in tumor cells.

Removing or eliminating foods that cause acid in the body will dramatically improve your health.  These include meat, eggs and dairy. Pork and Parmesan cheese have an extremely acidic effect on the body.

Alkaline
It is very difficult for disease or illness to exist in an alkaline body. When the body is in an alkaline state, it has increased energy levels.  Oxygen is transferred to the cells more effectively, which promotes healthy cell function.  It improves and protects the immune system.  The body will absorb nutrients and minerals more effectively.  Cells are able to repair more rapidly, which reduces premature aging.

Including foods that create an alkaline state in the body are dark leafy greens, fruit, and vegetables.  There are some foods that are naturally acidic such as lemons, however they actually create an alkaline balance in the body.

Getting Started
Start testing your pH balance so you can see for yourself what certain foods are doing in your body. Green smoothies are one of the fastest ways to influence your pH balance in the body.  In the last two and half years, I have had two colds.  One lasted for a day and the other lasted for three days.  Other than that, I have not experienced any other illness since my strokes in 2011.  I know that changing to an organic, alkaline vegetarian diet has been the key!

You can buy the testing strips from the chemist or online.  We brought 10 packs online and are still using them years later.  The brand we brought was called Youth Waters.  Just a note we have no affiliation with this company at all, they are just the strips we found easy to use.  More information on alkaline foods is available in my book, if you are interested.

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Cholesterol Made Easy!

Cholesterol often gets a bad rap.  It’s really important to know that there are two types of cholesterol.  They both do different things in the body.  There is the good cholesterol, which is called HDL.  And then there is the bad cholesterol, which is known as LDL.  The food choices you make influence your HDL and LDL levels.

What is cholesterol?Cholesterol & Green Smoothies
Cholesterol is the amount of fat within the bloodstream.  The fats within the blood stream are known as lipids.  It is a waxy substance that the body uses to produce vitamin D (the sunlight hormone), cortisone, aldosterone, progesterone, estrogen and testosterone.  Cholesterol builds cell walls and creates bile salts that help the body to digest fats.

The body naturally produces around 1,000 milligrams of cholesterol each day.  The average diet will usually contain between 150-250 milligrams per day. This is then added to the amount the body already produces.  You have the opportunity here to make sure you are getting lots of good HDL and limiting your LDL intake.

The good cholesterol HDLCholesterol & Green Smoothies
HDL helps to remove the bad cholesterol from the bloodstream and returns it to the liver.  The liver then processes it so it can be removed from the body.  It helps to protect the blood circulatory system from an excess of fat in the blood.  Whole foods that will help you to increase the HDL are greens smoothies, dark leafy greens, chia seeds, olive oil, avocados, nuts in particular walnuts.  Think fresh Mediterranean diet as a reference.

The bad cholesterol LDL
High LDL can build up and block the blood from moving easily through the body.  If a large build up occurs, it can form hard plaque on the inside of the vein walls, which causes the arteries to narrow.  This can reduce the rate of blood flow to the organs. It can be a major cause of heart disease, heart attack, stroke and angina.

Meat and dairy increase the amount of LDL in the body.  The amount you consume of these each day will directly affect your LDL levels. If you are serious about reducing your bad cholesterol levels, start with reducing meat and dairy.

Getting started
The first thing to do is get your cholesterol levels checked. Once you know where you are starting from, you can start streamlining your diet to match the health you want to create.  You can do this by making conscious decisions about what you put into your body, every day.  Your cholesterol levels are in your hands.  The best thing is you can create a fresh healthy diet full of smoothies and beautiful organic food.  What a delicious way to get healthy!

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Permission to Daydream!

Yesterday I caught up with my friend Rosie.  I love it when we catch up because we always have fun and do something healthy together.  We walked around the river and stopped for a drink and a long chat.  I’d love to say that Rosie does all the talking but I have to take half the responsibility. Turns out we can talk underwater! I’ve learnt a lot of great things from Rosie over the years and yesterday to my delight, would be no different.

We were excitingly sharing our plans for the future when Rosie said something that stopped me in my tracks.  It went a little something like this…

                                     “When you focus in what you want,
                             your actions tend to take you in that direction.”

It was so simple that it blew me away. The more I thought about it the more I realised you could apply this to anything you wanted to bring into your life.  A great holiday, a loving relationship or even great health.  I’m going to call it Rosie’s Daydreaming Law. So daydreaming about something you want to happen is the perfect way to set yourself in motion to achieving it.

The trick is to make sure you focus on what you really want, not what you don’t want.  The Universe doesn’t recognize if you whether you want something or not.  It will only recognize the thing or situation you are focused on.  So keep a firm eye on creating what you want to happen, and watch the magic take place.

When I look back over my journey, I realised something quite profound. I imagined health in my mind first, which then created new actions.  These new actions then created health in my body.  So daydreaming is not a waste of time but a valuable tool heal your body and create health.  You could use this amazing law to create the world around you.  Imagine it in detail, in colour and sound.  Feel what’s it’s like to be living in your ideal life.  Make your daydreams so fantastic; they are filled with pure joy.

So next time you find your self daydreaming about something exciting you want to bring into your life, spare a thought for Rosie’s Law.  The one piece of advice I will leave you with is…

Permisson To Daydream

In The Eye Of The Beholder

Macular Degeneration and Green Smoothies copyI wrote a piece for a lady early last year, who was experiencing macular degeneration. She was interested in using diet and green smoothies to limit any further loss of vision. I found a lot of foods that help to promote eye health. It was a really interesting challenge.

I noticed a change in my own vision in the past few months so I went to see the optometrist. I can see a hummingbird at one hundred metres away! My vision up close is a not quite as clear. I’ve had the same prescription for reading glasses for the last 15 years. This changed slightly at my eye test. Although they increased the prescription, it is still very mild.

I thought it was time to revisit eye health and make sure I was doing everything I could from a natural perspective, to look after my eyes.  This is the article I wrote about improving the health of your eyes using diet and green smoothies. Click here to read the full article.

Hope you have a wonderful day and “see” you next week! Please leave a comment and share this with your friends and family if you if found it valuable.

With love and gratitude,

Nikki xx

Here Are A Few Of My Favorite Things!

I thought I’d put together three of my favorite recipes for you.  I’ve included the benefits of each of the ingredients for you.  You’ll start to see that you can build your own recipes to target different parts of your health.

For instant, blueberries are brilliant for brain health and building new connections.  Use coconut for beautifully hydrated skin or watermelon to lower cholesterol and control blood pressure.  When you start to look at the how each of these foods affect your body, you can create your smoothies with a specific health issue in mind.  In my book, I’ve included a Food List to help guide and inspire you with ideas.  When you are building your lifestyle around health, using targeted foods will help you to reach your specific health goals.

The Blue BananaThe Blue Banana
1 banana – contains potassium, great for energy
250gm of blueberries – brain health and new connections
1 teaspoon of Manuka honey (optional) – anti-inflammatory
½ bunch spinach – cleans the blood
750ml of water – hydration
Blend well.

 

The Coconut ChimpThe Coconut Chimp
1 banana – protects the heart
1 fresh coconut (flesh & water) – skin hydration
1-2 handfuls of spinach – cleans the blood
Blend well.

 

Water Melon Green SmoothieWatermelon Green Smoothie
1/4 watermelon, pips & skin removed –  controls blood pressure
1/8 of a lime including the peel – contains cancer fighting benefits
20 mint leaves – relieves congestion, indigestion. Blood cleanser.
1 cup of water – hydration
Blend well until creamy and smoothie.  Refrigerate the watermelon before blending to make a nice cold drink.  So refreshing, healthy and delicious!

Click here for more green smoothie recipes…

Tomorrow is our last day of Birthday Celebration Gifts.  It will finish at midnight Friday 23rd May!  Find out more…

Love what you’ve read?  Share these easy, health recipes with your friends and family.  Write in the comments below your favorite green smoothie ingredient.