Healthy eating – day 25 – Five Ninja-Like Ways Coconut Oil Boosts Your Health

Healthy eating – day 25 – Five Ninja-Like Ways Coconut Oil Boosts Your Health

Five Ninja-Like Ways Coconut Oil Boosts Your Health

Anthony Punshon is a dedicated Fitness & Nutrition Specialist, Author, Public Speaker, and Trainer based in West Sussex, United Kingdom. To date, Anthony’s work has been featured in a multitude of prominent health, fitness, and lifestyle magazines. Additionally, he authored the “Sculpting the Perfect Waistline” series.

Currently, Anthony is the proud Owner and Head Transformation Coach of PW Physique and Fitness, one of the most renowned transformation studios in Sussex. He is also the Creator of Power Burn Xtreme, Power Living Intensive, Metabolic Xcelerator, and MCX: 30/30 weight loss and body transformation programmes.

He is very experienced at what he does and clearly understands healthy eating. Here is Anthony’s guest blog!

Coconut oil’s a bit of a healthy-food celeb right now.

spoon of coconut oil

Walk down any street and the paparazzi would be all over it like snakes on Samuel L Jackson’s plane.

With studies now in the thousands attesting to coconut oil’s health benefits and the product itself being widely accessible in supermarkets, there’s a tonne of ways coconut oil can give any healthy eating plan a boost.

It reduces inflammation and arthritis

In a world that’s becoming increasingly more stationary, inflammation and arthritis are rising faster than the head of the BBC’s blood pressure when he got the news that channel 4 stole Bake Off. Virgin coconut oil contains high levels of antioxidants, which work towards decreasing prostaglandin levels (think of these as inflammation mediators). As a result, those who suffer from arthritis can experience reduced bouts of inflammation, leading to less pain. In another study, researchers found that coconut oil also reduces inflammatory blood cells. Double bubble!

It reduces heart disease too

As anybody who’s health savvy knows, coconut oil is high in fat. In fact it’s basically entirely fat. However, it also contains high amounts of lauric acid, which is a medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) that may reduce cholesterol. There’s also evidence pointing towards the idea that MCTs reduce the risk of atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis isn’t just a word you can get your drunk mates to try and say to liven up any pub conversation, it’s a disease that sees plaque build up on the arterial walls. With more room for blood to flow, there’s less stress placed on the heart, and a reduced risk of blood clots.

It can cut Alzheimer’s risk

While many fats go through a 26-step process to break down into a form that’s used as energy, MCTs only require three steps. As a result, they’re instantly available, they move on to the liver, and they eventually turn into ketones, which are known to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s and limit the damage caused by epilepsy.

It fights a whole host of nasties

As well as lowering cholesterol levels, the lauric acid targets pathogens such as candida (which is a fungus. An actual fungus, not a bogeyman.), and has proven antibacterial properties too. While your body’s immune system goes a long way towards combatting viruses, bacteria, and fungal parasites itself, like Robin to Batman, it can always do with a helping hand. As bacteria thrive in sugary environments, it may be worth backing away from the carbohydrates when you feel ill, and find ways to add coconut oil to your diet instead.

It may reduce the risk of kidney disease

OK, so this one isn’t conclusive right now, but there’s a whole bunch of reasons coconut oil may reduce the risk of kidney disease too. One theory is that this is due to the reduced heart disease risk; when less strain is placed on the heart, less strain is placed on the kidneys, as high blood pressure can damage their filtering system. Another is that those with kidney disease suffer more when their immune system is under attack, as their kidneys have more waste to filter.

As coconut oil has immune system enhancing properties, it’s protecting the kidneys as a secondary benefit. More research is certainly needed here, but it certainly won’t hurt to add coconut oil to your diet to raise the odds in your favour.

 The best way to use coconut oil…

As with any dietary bolt-on, coconut oil is best used as part of a balanced eating plan, alongside drinking more water and moving yo’ ass. That’s exercise if you didn’t get that…

Evidence supporting its health benefits is certainly promising. Whether you use it to cook with, add it to your baking, or hold your nose and down a spoonful with your oats in the morning, in my opinion it’s a healthy eating essential you should jump on.

You can find Anthony on Facebook and on his website

A note from Honey

Thank you Anthony for sharing those cool facts about coconut oil. Now where did I put my bulletproof coffee!

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Healthy hug 🙂

Honey

Healthy eating day 16 – If you love bread you must read this!

Today’s guest blogger is artisan baker, Carol Hunter from Worthing. Grainwave is Carol’s business and she sells baked goods, including gluten free bread from her home in Worthing and at Goring farmer’s market.

A day in the life of ……… a fairly average (self-proclaimed) artisan baker

The ‘early to bed, early to rise’ maxim has always been in my subconscious, but only became a reality when I started my own business a couple of years ago. That’s when it became a choice thing rather than a struggle. (the ‘late to bed, late to rise’ – student thing  and ‘no-sleep, early rise’ of new-born infant thing were something else entirely!)

So what that means for me these days is starting the day with some ‘overnight oats’ – my own choice of additional nutty, seedy material to some basic bircher muesli soaked in organic soya milk. Fruit – it happens to be foraged blackberries from my own hedge this morning – and half a banana.

In winter it’s porridge – minus the seasonal blackberries – cranberries and grated apple. Oh, and lemon and ginger tea. I’ve taken advice from my Chinese doctor, mentor and well-being guru on the tea. She’s right, it’s a brilliant early morning de-tox. Whatever the season, if I start the day with that kind of combination, I know I can get to lunchtime without deviant snacking!

Soda bread

soda-bread

If it’s summer – which it seems to be for at least three days a week at the moment – I need to get on task immediately after my muesli. Summer is busy for my best customer – a local seafood restaurant – so today it’s early morning slicing and wrapping of the light soda bread ready for lunchtime service.

This is a great recipe and I often make extra for my own bread bin. Easy to digest unyeasted bread made with a blend of organic white and stoneground wholewheat flour. I add lemon juice and zest as it goes really well with fish and seafood plates at the restaurant. At home I just toast it like normal bread and have it with poached eggs, but it’s great with your favourite breakfast spread – honey or nut butters are delicious!

I never have enough eggs!

OK, so far so good. Almost eleven o’clock and seem to have found enough to distract me from any thoughts of food. Namely, a trip to Sainsbury’s for essential supplies – why have I never got enough eggs? I have a very convenient arrangement with my neighbour Zoe; she hands over a consignment of eggs from very happy hens and in return I supply her with organic home-made bread for the weekend … and still I end up at the supermarket making up the shortfall!

After a diversion to buy paint, I arrive home and embark on a small DIY project – painting a couple of tired old chairs. That takes me industriously towards coffee o’clock.

Time to get Zoe’s bread on its first proofing. Today it’s organic malted sunflower seed. I get all my flour delivered from a traditional flour mill in Gloucestershire. Once I tried it, there was no going back. The quality speaks for itself. I don’t make fancy bread, people are happy with a nice wholesome loaf that tastes good with anything – which isn’t that difficult if you make it yourself.

No bloating

48-hydration-sourdough

Pictured 48% hydration sourdough

The key element to home baking is the time you can give your bread to rise properly. All mine is done at room temperature. No running up and down stairs to the airing cupboard, just leave it to do its own thing – which may be most of the day. That way, the bread doesn’t start fermenting again in your tummy, which means no bloating

The last thing I do most evenings is weigh and feed my sourdough starter. This is the science part. OK, I don’t use my own wild yeast in every loaf, but by growing your own yeast, the only thing in your bread dough is flour, water and salt and nothing else! So for my bread it’s’ early to bed, slow to rise’ and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

 You can find Carol on Facebook at Grainwave and on her website

 

A note from Honey

Thank you Carol for sharing all your bread insights. I will be along for a loaf soon 🙂

What’s in this blog for you:

  • 30 days of blogs from a variety of people including experts to give you ideas and top tips for healthy eating
  • Free advice and inspiration
  • You can get this blog sent to you every day if you sign up here for my newsletter and you will also get a free relaxing recording

See you tomorrow

Healthy hug 🙂

Honey

Healthy eating – Day 3 – Guest blogger Jacqueline Barleycorn

Our second guest blogger is Jacqueline Barleycorn from The Sweet Lemon in Goring. Jacqui runs plant based cookery demonstrations at her home. Here Jacqui tells us about a typical day in her life. 

 

I start the day with oil pulling

My day tends to start about 7am. I love to wake up naturally and the first thing I do is oil pulling. I swish a spoonful of coconut oil around in my mouth for about 15 minutes before spitting it out. It’s reputed to have great health benefits. I then drink a pint of warm water.
A few times a week I dry brush before having my shower. It’s a great way to help circulation & lymphatic drainage. After I’ve showered, I do some gentle yoga. I find it helps to stretch out my muscles. I love doing it outside on the patio weather depending & usually end up with one of my dogs keeping me company.

I cook and create

Mornings are usually spent cooking. 2 years ago I started my blog after having changed to a plant based diet I felt I wanted to share my recipes. I try to make our evening meal in the morning as I find it helps to be organised and plan ahead if you’re trying to eat healthily. I also spend a lot of time trying out new recipes which have usually popped into my head during the night. 
I prefer to not have a big breakfast as I find it slows me down. I love having smoothies. My current favourite one is mango, berries and coconut water. They are just so crazily easy and quick to make. I always try to keep some frozen fruit in so I can always make a smoothie. 

I fill up on healthy vegetarian food

Lunch is usually something like soup and salad or flatbreads with avocado and humous. 
Afternoons are often spent walking my dogs and going for a bike ride. We are so lucky that we can cycle from our house along the seafront into town. I love living by the sea, so much that I miss it if I’m away from the coast. 
I usually end at my evening meal about 6 or 7. It’s usually something like a lovely cauliflower, chickpea and spinach curry or a sweet potato cottage pie with some lovely green veggies. 
During the day I drink warm water and coconut water.

Healthier cakes

 

plant based food

 

If I have a sweet treat it’s one of my raw cakes that I make which have no refined sugar in them. One of my families favourites is my raw millionaires shortbread which is made from nuts, coconut oil and raw chocolate. 
I find I feel so much better when I eat well. I try not to eat wheat, dairy and refined sugar. I find that what I eat affects me not only physically but mentally and emotionally. My blog is full of easy, fun recipes www.thesweetlemon.co.uk

A note from Honey….

Thanks Jacqui for your blog and sharing a day in your life with us.

What this blog is:

  • This is a 30 day blog about health eating where different people will share their thoughts and experience
  • This is a non-judgmental place of inspiration
  • This is a place to learn, pick up tips and think about your own eating

What this blog isn’t:

  • This isn’t a weight loss plan. Although losing weight is often a by-product of eating a healthier diet! I do help people lose weight with Hypnotherapy but that is not the purpose of this blog.
  • It isn’t a place to feel regret about the situation of your health right now. Today is a chance to make changes!

Do you know what you are eating?

Yesterday’s product was BBQ sauce.

Can you guess today’s product from it’s ingredients?

ingredients

 

Let us know in the blog or facebook comments! I will let you know the answer here tomorrow.

Here’s the plan:

  • Read the blog each day. Get involved. comment, share your thoughts and wisdom
  • If you want to be accountable and use this as an opportunity to improve your diet and see how much better you can feel in just 30 days then go for it
  • Find me on Facebook, my website, on twitter
  • Sign up to my newsletter at the bottom of this blog for a free relaxing download and  special offers

See you tomorrow.

Healthy hug 🙂

Honey

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