I always love this time of year, it feels like a chance for a new start and the change in season gets my slow cooker out for soups and bone broths. If your exercise and nutrition has slipped up over the last few weeks then now is the time to review it and make any changes you feel able to make. Our focus is pretty much food in keeping with the harvest, ideas on how to allow your body to utilise nature’s bounty, what foods are best to buy and Ty has an autumn 21 day challenge for you.
As most people know, at Refresh we advocate an organic diet, but often we get questioned about the cost of this. So I thought I would put together a list of priority of food to purchase starting with the best and then you can work down the list to decide which food options work best for you in respect of time, money and effort:
Grow your Own!!!!!
At home, in a box, in a pot - then you really know what’s in it!!
Try farmers markets, Maple Farm at Kesgrave does a pop up shop and sells at farmers markets.
National Organic Box Scheme
Jo uses Riverford where you can order online and adapt to your personal preferences – a medium veg box less roots start at £10.35 and are delivered to your door and taste amazing.
Ok it might have travelled but less spraying at the point of origin and it’s handy and it tastes good.
Less mileage so less spraying to preserve it. I’m thinking farmers markets but where an organic licence has not been given or local butchers and greengrocers. Talk to them about their produce.
It has travelled and been sprayed so quite a chemical storm on it. If you buy vegetables definitely wash them first and I would cut all the fat off any of this meat as it is where the body stores toxins when it can’t figure out what to do with them. As we know certain supermarkets have a better reputation than others… just saying.
Quote from farmers Weekly website:
“Results from the Office for National Statistics’ show that the proportion of household income going on food and soft drinks now comes to just 15%. That is less than half the share it took when the first Family Expenditure Survey was conducted 50 years ago. Then, the average household’s weekly spend came to £14.30, of which food and drink was the single biggest item at 33% (£4.72). Adjusted for inflation, that is equivalent to £80/week. But in 2006, the average weekly spend on food and drink comes to just £47, out of a total disposable income of £456. Of this, £12.50 goes on meat, £3.60 on fresh vegetables, £2.90 on fresh fruit and £4.10 on non-alcoholic drinks.” (Visit website).
I think these are really important statistics. Where are you spending your money in your life??? You only have one body in this life – feed it well. Love it and it will love you back.
Test your Stomach’s Acidity Levels
By Jo Tankard
One of the most important factors in health is your body’s ability to actually absorb the great food you are obviously eating!!
This starts in the stomach where your need an acidity level from 1-2 up to 4-5.
When you eat, the stomach releases enzymes called proteases as well as hydrochloric acid to aid in digestion. By itself, the acid doesn't really do much for digestion, but the proteases that break down the proteins work best in an acidic environment or low pH. If you don’t have enough acidity then your body can’t break down the food and it putrefies i.e. doesn’t digest, particularly protein, into vital amino acids (which the body needs for hormone support, neurotransmitters and healthy skin, hair and nails).
The PH levels helps break down food, but also maintains the acidic environment in the digestive system that kills bacteria, parasites and pathogens that we may ingest with food.
Symptoms of low acidity can be: Constipation, diarrhea, undigested food in stool, acid reflux, gas, bloating, indigestion, belching, skin problems or acne, and chronic nutrient deficiencies.
Home Testing for Stomach Acidity Levels
You can easily test your acidity level as follows:
Baking Soda Test:
1. Mix 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda in 4-6 ounces of cold water first thing in the morning before eating or drinking anything.
2. Drink the baking soda solution.
3. Time how long it takes you to belch. Time up to five minutes.
If you have not belched within five minutes stop timing.
In theory, if your stomach is producing adequate amounts of stomach acid you’ll likely belch within two to three minutes. Early and repeated belching may be due to excessive stomach acid (but don’t confuse these burps with small little burps from swallowing air when drinking the solution). Any belching after 3 minutes indicates a low acid level.
Apple Cider Vinegar Test:
It isn’t a perfect test, but if taking 1 tsp of ACV in water helps alleviate heartburn, it may be a sign of inadequate HCL production.
Now What?? How to Increase Stomach Acidity at home naturally
• Do not eat within a few hours of bedtime to allow adequate time for digestion
• Drink ginger tea or chew a small piece of ginger between meals to stimulate stomach acid production
• Add 1/4 cup of homemade or unpasteurized sauerkraut to each meal
• Don’t drink with meals. It dilutes the HCL.
• Chew foods thoroughly to make them easier to digest.
• Use a high quality salt to taste.
• Consume high quality proteins and vegetables and avoid processed foods, added sugars and additives.
• Consume a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar in water about 30 minutes before meals.
• Try not to eat when you’re stressed or upset, as stress can lower HCL levels
You know how it is, summer begins to approach and we all start to feel a little more motivated to start taking care of ourselves.
Whether it’s the longer, brighter, warmer days or the fear of having to strip down to your bathers for your trips to the local beach or upcoming holiday, either way we all tend to start thinking about how we ought to start making a bit more of an effort to ‘get in shape’ or start ‘getting healthy’.
The problem is, once summer draws to a close and the temperatures drop, the days get shorter and the “holiday” motivation passes, it becomes very easy to gradually slip back into old habits.
This of course isn’t ideal for anybody trying to achieve long-term health and/or fitness related goals.
With that, my aim today is to give you several tips for keeping your health and fitness motivation once the novelty of being healthy and in shape wears off...
The first on our list: Remove Guilt - Forget the Past
When we make a mistake, eat a cheat meal or skip a workout it’s very easy to dwell on the negatives. I shouldn’t have... Read more.
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We are all familiar with the above phrase and we tend to think about the physical implications of what we eat - the weight gain, the clogged artery or similar physical conditions. We know, on some level, that the extra piece of pie or the additional sweet is not doing us any good. Sometimes this may even extend to scary things we have read in the press or online that claim to link foods to cancer and other diseases.
What is often missed is the impact on our mental health.What is that food doing to your ability to think and feel? Can it be that the 'fogginess' that we sometimes feel is related to the diet we consume? That lack of 'get up and go' is linked to our limited western diets? Research by Dr Gary Johnson has proven links with lack of vitamin C, many of the B vitamins, and excesses of sugar, dairy and gluten in diets, to significant effects on mental and emotional health. So if your thought process is compromised by what you eat, how do you mentally eat the right stuff but avoid the things you crave when your brain is in a fog?
This is where EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) can help:
Albert Einstein stated that everything is energy. Think of the body and brain like an energy circuit. Distress (i.e. emotional eating) causes a short-circuit and EFT uses meridian and acupuncture points to re-circuit the system. It bypasses your 'emotional' brain to aid you in making the right decisions.
Ms D said "understanding the link between how I was feeling and the sugar I was eating, together with some professional help, gave me the motivation I needed to give it a miss. After just a few days off chocolate I started to feel better".