The Best Plant Protein Sources

For the last few decades, we’ve been led to believe that the only way to get enough protein in our diet is by consuming animal products, especially poultry, fish, and eggs.

It’s such a deeply held belief that many people will outright deny that it’s possible to get enough protein by only eating plants – but countless studies have proven that not only can we get plenty of protein, but we also attain the many protective benefits that plants have to offer.

Continue reading “The Best Plant Protein Sources”

What and When to Eat for Building Muscle

You may not realise this, but your body is a machine which constantly reinvents itself. Throughout the day, your body breaks down its own tissue and replaces it with new tissue created from the foods we eat and the recycled material foraged from other tissues.

Every person’s body does this, but the process takes place much faster in the bodies of people who work out. As such, if you’re looking to bulk up, nutrition has to become an essential part of your routine.

How Much You Should Eat

A recent study found that muscle mass increased 0.2% per day during the first 20 days of a strength-training program, besides the high rate of muscle-protein breakdown already occurring. This easily explains why someone who’s just starting out on muscle building requires more protein that someone already deep into a strength training regime.

As such, a good amount to aim for when starting out is 0.73 grams of protein per 450g of body weight per day.

How Often You Should Eat

The process by which the body takes protein from food and turns it into muscle tissue is known as protein synthesis. As nutritional advisor Mike Roussell, Ph.D. explains it, protein synthesis is like a light switch – it’s either on or off.

By ingesting 20-25 grams of high-quality protein, the process of protein synthetisation is turned on. It has been proven that those who eat at least 20 grams of protein 6 times a day – best ingested while playing pokies online – will lose body fat and increase lean mass, but if 6 meals seems excessive try 3 protein-rich meals per day instead.

Pre- and Post-Workout Foods

A recent study found that those who took protein supplements gained almost a full kilogram of muscle over 12 weeks compared to those who did not.

With this in mind, studies have also shown that your muscles are most receptive to protein every 4-6 hours and you should ideally eat a protein-rich meal 2-3 hours before training and another within 1-2 hours of finishing your workout.

The Best Sources of Protein

Your body needs amino acids in order to build muscle as they are the building blocks of protein and certain foods contain different combinations of amino acids. Of all the amino acids, leucine is by far the most important when it comes to building muscle and it takes approximately 2-3 grams of leucine to get the maximum effect from a meal.

The good news is that any average-sized portion of protein contains at least 2 grams of leucine.

Carbohydrates and Fat

Most us who work desk jobs don’t need to ingest pre-workout carbohydrates as you have plenty in reserve and your regularly scheduled meals should be enough energy for a solid workout.

However, there is evidence that combining protein with carbs in a post-workout meal will result in higher protein synthesis and you should ingest a good amount of healthy fats in the form of olive oil and nuts.

Delicious Superfood Smoothies for Increased Energy

Green smoothies and superfoods smoothies are the perfect fuel for body and mind and can be added to your everyday routine. All of the smoothie recipes listed below are naturally gluten, diary, soy, egg, and refined sugar free, so they’re perfect for every diet and you’ll be sipping your way to a happier and healthier day in no time at all.

Superfood Smoothie Boosters

These superfood smoothie additions will turn your average smoothie into a boost of wellness!

  • Chia seeds are loaded with omega fats, protein, and dietary fibre, are ideal for hydration and will help you feel full for longer.
  • Maca powder provides natural energy, helps to balance hormones, and increases fertility.
  • Hemp seeds are a sustainable source of protein, omega fatty acids, dietary fibre, antioxidants, and minerals.
  • Cashews add the perfect dose of healthy fats, protein, and added creaminess.
  • Plant-based protein powders are power packed with omega 3.

Green Superfood Smoothies

Tropical Green Smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 1 frozen banana
  • ½ an orange
  • 1 packed cup of chopped kale or baby spinach
  • ½ cup diced pineapple
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • ½ cup unsweetened almond milk
  • Handful of ice cubes

Combine all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

Energizing Green Smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • ½ cup strong black coffee, cold
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1 tablespoons almond butter
  • 1 cup baby spinach
  • 1-2 medjool dates, pitted
  • 1 tablespoon raw cocoa powder
  • Handful of ice cubes

Combine all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth and enjoy while getting started with FIFA World Cup betting!

Kale Ginger Detox Smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 1 frozen banana
  • ½ cup fresh or frozen blueberries
  • 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated
  • 2 cups kale
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons-1 tablespoon raw honey

Combine all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

Berry Superfood Smoothie

The Brain Food Smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 2 large handfuls baby spinach or kale
  • ¾ cup fresh or frozen blueberries
  • ½ a banana
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • ½ cup unsweetened green tea
  • ½ cup unsweetened almond milk
  • Handful of ice cubes

Combine all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

Creamy Coconut Pomegranate Smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup pomegranate seeds
  • ½ cup light coconut milk
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 cup of baby spinach or kale
  • Handful of ice cubes

Combine all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

Strawberry Beetroot Smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 2 small beetroots, cooked and peeled
  • 1 ½ cups strawberries
  • 2 medjool dates, pitted
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • Handful of ice cubes

Combine all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

Chocolate Superfood Smoothie

Raw Chocolate Smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon raw honey
  • 1 medium banana
  • 2 tablespoons raw peanut butter
  • 1 ½ tablespoons raw cacao powder
  • ½ cup unsweetened almond milk

Combine all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

Vegan Chocolate Protein Smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cups unsweetened almond milk
  • Flesh from 1 young coconut
  • 2 frozen bananas
  • 1 tablespoon toasted carob powder
  • 1 ½ tablespoons hemp protein powder
  • ¼ cup vegan mini chocolate chips

Combine all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

Beginners Guide To Fitness

The Beginners Guide To Fitness

Once again another year has passed, and once again a bit more weight has been gained…sigh! And new years is fast approaching, so instead of making the usual annual commitment to weight loss and then flaking after week or two, try our top tips on getting and staying fit for 2018:

One: Think SMART (smart, measurable, achievable, relevant and timely)

Smart – plan this journey out, you need to have specific goals to achieve, so spend some time and do your homework. Even if you have to go to a trainer or a dietician, you need to figure out what will work for your body and implement it

Measurable – ensure you monitor your results; sometimes motivation can be lost when the scale goes up instead of down. But often muscles can cause you to become heavier, but if you monitor your measurements you will see the results more clearly.

Achievable – Do not fool yourself into believing you can get fit or loose 20kgs in two weeks, when you have done your proper research you will be able to implement a fitness program that will be achievable for you. do not sabotage yourself with extreme unreachable soul destroying goals

Relevant – ok so you want to run a marathon next year June, that’s a great goal. But do not train like your planning on beating the professionals and are going to win this your first ever marathon after spending their last 4 years playing real money slots on your couch.  So unless you have decided to become a professional athlete, make goals that suit you and your lifestyle.

Timely – be reasonable about the time it will take to achieve your goal. For example – I would like to run a marathon in 3hrs in June next year. Is this a reasonable goal? No, average amateur runners take between 4 to 5 hours to run a marathon, so if you attempt to push yourself into running it n three hours – you will damage yourself (and also not succeed)

Two: Diet

Once you have set up your SMART goals and are ready to begin, do not forget your diet:

– remember the 80/20 rule, 80% of fitness depends on your diet. So if you are eating 80% junk and exercising 6 days a week, you can expect t have some very poor fitness results. You cannot exercise enough to day to make up for that cheeseburger and fries!

– If you do see a dietician, implement their recommendations and stay on it! If you fall off the diet wagon occasionally, do not quit, carry on do some extra crunches, skip for ten minutes – you got this!

– Find food replacements – cauliflower instead of rice, zoodle noodles instead of pasta, butternut fries instead of potato fries.  The options these days are just as tasty as the originals, so do your research and find what you like.

Beginners Guide To Fitness

Three: Exercise

You do not have to jog or run or do aerobics or swim or any other type of exercise that makes you want to die (and quit). The options for exercise are varied, so if you ate running try weightlifting or swimming.

For myself, after a stressful day at work I really seem to enjoy punching – so my speed MMA box class is perfect for me. Find your favourite exercise (or exercises) ad work on them.

Ketogenic Diet

Using a Ketogenic Diet for Weight Loss

Everyone knows that in order to lose weight you need to burn more calories than you take in, but knowing this doesn’t necessarily equate to losing weight. In fact, at least 60% of dieters who successfully lose weight not only gain all the weight back, but often do so with extra weight added.

However, there is hope! More and more people are catching on to a weight loss concept known as ketosis. People who eat a ketogenic diet are generally more successful as eating high fat, low carb food helps to suppress appetite far more than other types of eating.

Weight Loss and the Ketogenic Diet

Here’s how a ketogenic diet works:

  • A diet centred on bringing the body to a state of ketosis
  • Ketosis is a metabolic process in which the body burns fat for energy as opposed to its primary fuel, carbohydrates
  • If you drastically limit your carbohydrate intake, your body switches to a state of ketosis in order to create energy
  • Once in ketosis, the liver uses the body’s fatty acids to make molecules known as ketones to burn for fuel

Benefits of Ketosis for Weight Loss

  • Increased fat burn: your body goes into a fasting state and uses your fat stores directly for energy
  • Blood sugar regulation: eating a ketogenic diet rich in healthy fats, proteins, and an abundance of vegetables leads to more stabilised blood sugar. Tradition diet foods are usually high in refined sugars and other carbohydrates leading to a spike in blood sugar which leaves you feeling hungry soon after.
  • Appetite suppression: ketogenic diets are helpful in reducing appetite by altering the concentrations of hormones and nutrients which affect hunger, meaning you won’t have to break for food while playing online roulette Canada!
  • Hormone regulation: ketosis can help sustain weight loss by regulating hormones that affect weight.

How to Achieve Ketosis

The goal on a ketogenic diet is to limit your carbohydrate intake to between 20-50 grams per day, including those from processed and whole food sources.

Your ketogenic diet can be broken down into the following macronutrient percentages:

  • High fat intake makes up 70-80% of total calories
  • Moderate protein intake makes up 20-25% of total calories
  • Low carb intake makes up 5-10% total calories

Food to Avoid on a Ketogenic Diet

In order to reach ketosis, you want to avoid or severely limit high high-carb sources of food such as:

  • Refined grains
  • Whole grains including wheat, oats, rice, corn, rye, and barley
  • Refined sugars of all kinds
  • Flour-based baked good
  • Soft drinks and juices high in sugar
  • Fruits such as apples, bananas, citrus
  • Beans and legumes including chickpeas, kidney beans, black beans, lentils, and peas
  • Starchy vegetables such as potatoes, sweet potatoes, carrots, and parsnips
  • Bread and pasta
  • Low-fat diet products (these food products are generally high in carbs, nutritionally empty, and have no benefit to your body or weight reduction)

Food to Eat on a Ketogenic Diet

  • Meat: beef, chicken and other poultry, pork, lamb, turkey, veal, and fish such as salmon, sardines, tuna, and trout
  • Eggs, preferably free-range
  • Dairy products such as cheeses, sour cream, yoghurt, butter, and heavy creamsKetogenic Diet
  • Low-carb vegetables such as spinach, kale, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, asparagus, peppers, and onions
  • Fats and oils such as nuts and seeds, high quality oils such as olive oil, sesame oil, high oleic sunflower and safflower oils, ghee, grass-fed butter, and coconut oil
  • Lower-sugar fruits such as blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, and avocado
  • Herbs and spices that are sugar and carbohydrate free

Enjoy and good luck!

Healthy Snacks for a Fitter You

While you may not believe it now, there are a large number of snacks that you can pick up from your local store and prepare without picking up a dramatic amount of weight. You deserve to feel you and look your very best, and a fridge full of healthy snack is the best way to go.

Join us as we explore a mouth-watering list of healthy eats that will give you the get up and go that you need to stay fit and maintain that summer body all year round.

Griddled Pineapple and Coconut

You may not be aware but pineapple actually contains a specific enzyme that is responsible for alleviating joint pain and reducing inflammation, called bromelain. (Serves 4)

Ingredients:

  • 1 peeled and sliced pineapple
  • 2 handfuls of coconut chips
  • 4 scoops of coconut flavoured frozen yogurt

Method:

  • Preheat the oven to 180
  • Place the coconut chips in a baking tray and toast them in the oven for a couple of minutes until they appear golden brown.
  • Warm up a griddle pan on a medium to high heat and add the pineapple. Grill for a minute or 2 on each side.
  • Serve pineapple with your scoop of frozen yogurt and sprinkle the toasted coconut on top.

Grilled Halloumi & Mango Slaw with Tahini

If you’d prefer to spend your time exercising and staying fit and only treat yourself to games at a casino NZ on your sofa when you’ve completed you work out, you won’t want to miss out on this summer salad. It boasts a combination sweet mango and fennel flavours with salty halloumi and topped with a creamy tahini salad dressing. (Serves 4)

Ingredients:

  • Coconut butter or oil
  • Cashews (100g)
  • 1 fennel bulb, grated or julienne
  • 1 carrot, grated or julienne
  • 1 mango, grated or julienne
  • raisins (50g)
  • Halloumi (400g) cut into thin slices (Approx. 1cm wide)
  • Basil leaves (10g)
  • 1 red chilli

The Dressing:

  • Tahini (2 tbsp)
  • 1 Lime
  • Salt (½ a tsp)
  • Coconut milk (1 tbsp)

Method:

  • Heat a teaspoon of coconut butter or oil in a pan before throwing in the cashews and stirring well. Sprinkle salt and keep stirring until you see the nuts turn a golden colour. Set on a plate to cool down.
  • Mix your fennel, mango, carrot and raisons in a bowl and combine the dressing ingredients. Add a tablespoon or two of water to thin out.
  • Heat a tablespoon of coconut oil in a griddle or frying pan and make sure it is over a high heat. Fry the Halloumi for a minute on each side until it too turns a golden colour. Top your veggies with the halloumi and the cashews and pour over the dressing. Throw in the basil leaves and the chilli to serve.

Deep Green Smoothie

Spirulina is a great superfood that is ideal for increasing energy levels and cleansing you body to remove toxins and improve immune functions. (Serves 1)

Ingredients:

  • 4 sprigs of mint
  • Pineapple (200g)
  • 1 lemon
  • ½ a cucumber
  • 2 big handfuls of spinach or kale
  • A ¼ tsp of spirulina powder

Method:

Simply add all the ingredients into your blender, but be sure to only add the spirulina at the end.

Beetroot-Orange-Salad

Bay-Infused Beetroot and Orange Salad

One of the best things about healthy living is not having to miss out on meals packed with colour and flavour. Beetroot, citrus, and onion have all been scientifically proven to support healthy body functions, the immune system, exercise and athletic performance, and so much more.

Increase your intake of these fantastic foods with a bay-infused beetroot and orange salad that will brighten up and add a whole lot of zing to summer lunches.

The Body Loves Beetroot

One of the salad’s star ingredients, beetroot is high in naturally-occurring nitrates, and improves oxygenation of the muscles during exercise, which can enhance exercise tolerance. It also contains choline, which aids with muscle movement, memory, learning, sleep, cellular membrane structure, nerve impulse transmission, fat absorption, and chronic inflammation.

Beetroot is also a good source of dietary fibre that promotes a healthy digestive system and helps prevent constipation.

Oranges are Awesome

Whether you work up a sweat in the gym or by playing online keno games, the incredible benefits of oranges can work for you. The glucose contained in oranges is released slowly into the bloodstream, which means more steady energy levels over a longer period of time, and the best part is it’s not followed by a crash.

Oranges are also a good source of potassium, a mineral that assists with muscle contraction, fluid regulation, and more. The flavonoids in citrus fruit can help keep your heart healthy, while the fibre in citrus not only helps the digestive tract, it also helps regulate glucose levels and lower cholesterol.

All About Onions

As far as health benefits go, onions are awesome. They contain high amounts of flavonoids, phytochemicals, vitamin C, and sulphuric compounds, all of which are good for you in all sorts of ways.

Flavonoids such as quercetin is an antioxidant linked to cancer prevention, and can help reduce risks of cardiovascular disease, Parkinson’s disease, and stroke. It can also help lower blood pressure, promote prostate health, improve bone density in post-menopausal women, ease bladder infection symptoms, and has anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-inflammatory properties.

Brilliant Balsamic Vinegar

They say dynamite comes in small packages. Balsamic vinegar bursts with goodness in every dose. The vinegar can help lower and stabilise blood pressure levels by reducing hardening of the arteries.

It can also help stabilise cholesterol and blood glucose levels.

Ingredients:

6 – 8 raw beetroot, peeled and cut into wedges

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon honey

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 large bay leaf

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

½ a red onion, sliced thinly

2 oranges, peeled and segmented

A handful of microgreens, mustard greens, or rocket leaves

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 220˚C. Place a large piece of foil on a baking tray, shiny side up, and place the raw beetroot wedges in the centre of it. Mix the honey, 1 teaspoon of the olive oil, and 1 tablespoon of the balsamic vinegar, and drizzle it over the beetroot wedges. Place the bay leaf on the beetroot, and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Fold the foil over the beetroot, forming a sealed package, and cook in the oven for 45 minutes. Open up the package, and cook for another 10 to 15 minutes, taking care the beetroot does not burn or scorch.

During the last 15 minutes of cooking, mix the remaining olive oil and balsamic vinegar in a jug. Remove the beetroot from the foil, and arrange the wedges, along with the orange segments and the onion slices on plates or a serving platter. Sprinkle the greens over, drizzle on the dressing, and enjoy.